Hiking the Ute is one of my favorite morning workouts, and thanks to the Camelbak Rogue I can now make it to the top faster while staying hydrated - largely because I don’t waste time dropping a water bottle and having it roll through the dirt and various wet spots left by Fido on the trail.
My old Camelbak is more than a decade old, a bit bulky with a 100 ounce (3 liter) reservoir and tends to bounce around quite a bit on my back. In contrast, the new Rogue holds 70 ounces of fluid (2 liters), which is the perfect amount of liquid for a one to two hour workout. The reservoir itself has been redesigned with a locking bite valve that is great for keeping water from accidentally leaking in the car or dribbling down your clothes. The wide mouth on the reservoir makes it a cinch to fill and add ice cubes, and it now includes a set of arms that helps keep the bladder open when drying it out. Perhaps the best improvement is the new 1/4 turn cap which makes opening and closing the reservoir incredibly easy.
The Rogue has a low-profile design which sits close to your back, held in place with a single chest strap. For a fast-paced hike and mountain biking it works great, but the pack still bounces a bit too much for my taste for a full-out run. But filled halfway with a liter of water, the entire setup is virtually unnoticeable on your back. For hot weather and hard-core workouts, air-mesh on the harness and a back panel air-channel make for a comfortable fit that helps limit the sweat factor.
Another simple but compact feature is the way the top of the Rogue opens and closes, with the bag snapping over the top of the reservoir. Reflective tape near the bottom outside of the bag is a nice touch for safety during late night outings. Finally, the exterior of the bag has two small pouches, which are great for holding small items such as a cell phone, keys and energy bar, but not big enough for the oxygen tank I need to break the 20-minute mark for climbing the Ute.